How To Heat A Cold Garage
What is the best way to heat my cold garage? How to Install Electric Wiring for a Floor Heat System, Electrical Circuit for a Floor Heating System.
Electric Heat for a Cold Garage
Electrical Question: What is the best way to heat my cold garage?
I use my garage as an art studio and am trying to determine the effective and cost efficient way to heat the garage during the winter, (it gets down to the low 30’s and even 20s here).
- After doing my research, I’ve realized that I have 2 options:
- Go all out and get a good 240 volt garage heater.
- Buy a few 120 volt space convection heaters to heat up the area.
The problem with the first option is that all outlets are standard 120 volt.
- That said, if I did try to go the garage heater route, what steps do I need to take?
- I am definitely not going to try to wire things on my own, and I would have a professional electrician do it.
- Would I go to my power company to do this or should I contact an electrician?
- Can you estimate about how much the process will cost?
- And finally, and sorry if this is a dumb question, is there anyway I could instead use the same outlet as my refrigerator to plug in and run the 240 volt garage heater? Frigidaire refrigerator model #FRT21LR7DS3.
- We could easily run the wire into the kitchen if needed.
Thanks for any help!
This electrical wiring question came from: Rachel, a Homeowner in Athens, Georgia.
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Rachel.
How to Install Electric Wiring for a Floor Heat System
Application: Installing Electric Floor Heat.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced – Best installed by a Licensed Electrician.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and a Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with tools and install electrical circuit wiring.
Precaution: Identify the panel circuit, turn it OFF and Tag it with a Note before working with the wiring.
Notice: Installing additional electrical circuit wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes with a permit and be inspected.
Electrical Circuit for a Floor Heating System
- Rachael, the first thing I would recommend is to seal up any air leaks and insulate the walls and the ceiling of the garage where ever possible.
- Unfortunately your refrigerator circuit will typically not support the additional electrical load of a heating system, especially one that will heat your cold garage.
- If you must use electricity to heat then a 240 volt heater unit would be much more energy efficient than a 120 volt heating system.
- If the space will be used continuously then I would highly recommend installing a heat cable system into the floor.
- A typical floor heat system requires a dedicated 240 volt circuit. The amperage of the circuit breaker providing the power will depend on the size of the specific heat system.
- Floor heat systems are controlled by a thermostat which can have a variety of settings to enable energy savings and maintain warmth when you need it most.
- The floor cable systems heat from the floor up which makes it much more comfortable for the conditioned area.
- If the garage has a high ceiling then consider installing a ceiling fan as well which will help bring the heat down from the ceiling.
More about Garage Electrical Wiring
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- This is helpful as a Homeowner: Do-It-Yourself Electrical
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wiring!The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester, [amazon.com], I use for the detection of Standard Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
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